India Kids Summit Season 5 witnessed an array of esteemed professionals coming in for insightful conversations and one particular panel that stood out was that of ‘Kidfluencers – The New Emerging Trend’.

The panel was moderated by Mr. Tarandeep Singh Sekhon, Chief Business Officer, Bounce Inc India, as he sat down for a conversation with Pratik Gaur, Founder & CEO, Celebistaan Pvt Ltd; Myra Singh, Actor/Influencer; Anngad Raaj, Actor/Influencer; Rashi Shinde, Influencer; and Hemang Vasani, Head, Licensed Consumer Products India, Mena & North Asia, Hasbro.

Mr. Sekhon: I have to just simply ask the kids first, how do you manage and balance everything?

Mr. Raaj– On shoot days, it is obviously a little tougher but I try to sneak in time to study as much as I can. On non-shooting days, I get up, go to school, study, come back, do my usual work, play games outside or play video games.

Ms. Singh– I am in 9th standard, so going to school is much more important for me. I go school as much as possible and it is only after that, I go for shoot. I also have tuition in the afternoon, hence I try and attend that. And amidst all this, I try and find gaps and time to study. I also have a lot of fun on set but that’s when I get a few extra minutes to study as well.

Ms. Shinde– For me too, school is in the morning, and I shoot after that. My parents are extremely supportive and understanding, so that makes things easier. I don’t have deadlines but there are some grands who want it urgently, so I try and work accordingly but manage to balance study and work rather well.

Mr. Sekhon- Amazing. Now to you Mr. Vasani and Mr. Gaur, how do you think brands have changed their outlook in terms of hiring Kidfluncers or kids, who just have a huge reach on social media.

Mr. Vasani- I would say, COVID-19 pandemic has changed the thought process. Earlier, TVCs brought in certainty of a particular amount of reach. But now, we too, have moved away from traditional media completely for some specific brands. It also depends on the product. For instance, X influencer is better for Nerf and Y Influencer is better for Nerf – we would assess the requirement and the target audience and then hire an influencer for the same accordingly. It is a field everyone is learning about. In the end you want to talk about loyalty and awareness to and of the brand.

Mr. Gaur- When we started seven years ago, no one knew what influencer marketing was. After COVID-19, the market has indeed changed. It is costly, and there is no denying that. In fact, there are brands who mention that they don’t have conversion and hence brands are following niche marketing. Beauty, skin care, travel etc. follow and hire influencers based on their product and the reach the respective creator is bringing in. Today, anyone can be a creator.

Chiming in-

Ms. Singh- When a brand approaches us, they have their own idea and it is challenging at times, but we plan it out. Fortunately, my Mom understands it better and handles it accordingly.

Mr. Raaj- I am barely an influencer, I am more an actor.

Ms. Shinde- Also, I have to say. Not all videos and reels work. My mother, too, looks at it and advises trends, songs, etc. which might help the reel to have a better reach than others.

Mr. Sekhon- What would be the do’s and don’ts when you deal with hiring Kidfluncers or influencers in general?

Mr. Vasani- I think the biggest check one can have is – why do you need this? For instance, if your end goal is awareness, I would say Kidfluncers aren’t ideal because in that case your goal is awareness, not conversion. As brand leads, you have to have that understanding, and don’t need to sell everything. As brands, there is content for awareness and then there is content for sales. You need to distinguish that and understand that to make sure your brand reaches the maximum number of people.

Mr. Gaur- Brands have proper terms and conditions. But I would like to take the opportunity to address and tell, especially to the parents of kidfluncers – don’t exploit them. Once they are in this webz they forget their lives. I mean, kids talking about likes, views, engagement is what takes over their innocence, and it is dark space to be in. Hence, I would suggest to be as real as possible. And make content that adds value, not for the sake of it.

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